Happy International Women’s Day! As I think over the issues facing today’s women, I admire even more the struggles and efforts of our predecessors. To think that even 100 years ago we had no right to vote for our leaders or to really have any voice on major issues even affecting us!
Women have come a long way since the 20th amendment was passed in 1920. However, we still have some ways to go. I think in many instances, today’s women grow disheartened by trivial issues, issues that in many ways do not make them appear superior. We choose to leave behind our grace, our very feminine qualities which make us special. Men and their masculinity do not exist to be without our feminine sides to balance and counteract. By seeking too much to dismiss our fundamental and biological qualities, we forfeit our very existence. The point of equality was not to overrun or grow manly! It was to let us finally have the right to CHOOSE for ourselves! To let our feminine virtues stand in equal consideration besides a man’s.
Being ladylike is not forfeiting the struggles of those before us. If anything it is using our very unique abilities to show that we are just as equal. These qualities are not a hindrance, but a strength. Forgetting those virtues allows the masculine traits to still run rampant and, in fact, appear the superior.
Women should not attack on another based on their own personal, unique choices. A woman decides to stay home with her children? No, she is not a disgrace. She freely chose this as her role as a woman. A woman decides to work instead of staying home? No, she is not any less of a woman. She simply once again chose to follow her heart. Our ancestors fought for the right of all women to choose their destiny, to be able to work outside the home if they chose. A woman who chooses to do as she pleases and is FREE to do so: that was the women’s rights movement.
Yes, we deserve the right to equal pay. Yes, we shouldn’t be hindered because we can have children while men cannot. That doesn’t make me any less intelligent than a man.
In today’s world, I see many women in the limelight. Some are vulgar, crass, and very aggressive. Others are classy, use words instead of actions, and set examples through leadership only. To me, the ones who are true examples are not ones who scream out in protest non-stop. Instead, they lead through actions. They enter the world, ready to share their own personal contribution, come what may await them. They have stayed true to themselves, to their roles as women, and they have overcome obstacles awaiting them. They show class and decency, and change the system from within. These are the women I celebrate.